Encyclopedia of Medieval Pilgrimage

Get access Subject: History
Edited by: Larissa J. Taylor et al.

The Encyclopedia of Medieval Pilgrimage is an interdisciplinary reference work, giving wide coverage of the role of travel in medieval religious life. Dealing with the period 300-1500 A.D., it offers both basic data on as broad a range of European pilgrimage as possible and clearly written, self-contained introductions to the general questions of pilgrimage research.

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Narrative Accounts, Itineraries and Descriptions

(2,007 words)

Author(s): Kathleen Ashley
Pilgrim authors write in various languages and from perspectives that differ depending upon their nationality, culture, social status, professional interests and audience. Despite the variety within the genre, recurrent themes may be expected in pilgrim literature; these include venerating the relics at shrines, describing churches (architecture, personnel and ceremonies), identifying potential lodgings en route, and commenting on the landscape, the people, and the food in each region. Where the…

Navigatio Sancti Brendani

(866 words)

Author(s): Dorothy Bray
The Navigatio Sancti Brendandi abbatis tells how the Irish saint, Brendan (c. 486 to c. 575), the abbot of Clonfert (also known as Brendan the Navigator), was inspired to set sail with fourteen monks in search of the Land of Promise of the Saints. The date of composition is believed to be between the early eighth and late ninth centuries. The author and provenance are unknown, but the work was probably composed by an Irishman familiar with tales of sea voyages by Irish clerics. The narrative enjoyed…